PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - Feb 6

Thu Feb 6, 2014 1:26am EST

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Feb 6 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories in the Wall Street Journal. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* The Obama administration will narrow its controversial drone program in Pakistan to target a short list of high-level terrorists, and aim to end it during the prime minister's current term, senior U.S. officials have told their Pakistani counterparts. ()

* Insurers are facing pressure from regulators and lawmakers about plans that offer limited choices of doctors and hospitals: a tactic the industry said is vital to keep down coverage prices in the new health law's marketplaces. ()

* CVS Caremark Corp, United States' second-largest pharmacy chain, would stop selling all cigarettes and tobacco products nationwide by October, saying they have no place in a drugstore company that is trying to become more of a health-care provider. ()

* Apple Inc is facing a claim for about $2 billion in damages from a German patent-holding company, IPCom GmbH, that alleges the U.S. technology giant infringed on a cellphone technology it owns, a German court said Wednesday. ()

* Twitter Inc's fourth-quarter revenue surged, but so did concerns about the site's ability to grow and engage users. Costs continued to rise faster than revenue, and shares fell after hours. ()

* Google Inc under a tentative deal with European Commission regulators agreed to tweak the way it presents search results in Europe to address concerns that it is abusing its dominance in online search to favor its own services at the expense of rivals. ()

* Relations between Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer were strained at times as they worked with the board to find the third CEO in Microsoft Corp's history. The six-month search started with 100 candidates. ()

* Pandora Media Inc provided guidance for the first quarter and 2014 that missed Wall Street's consensus views, though the Internet-radio service continued to report strong revenue growth in its fourth quarter. ()

* More than one in six men aged 25 years to 54 years don't have jobs. It is partly a symptom of a U.S. economy slow to recover from the worst recession in 75 years and also a chronic condition that shows how technology and globalization are transforming jobs faster than many workers can adapt. ()

* Work to expand the Panama Canal has virtually halted, and the group in charge of construction said the project is on the "brink of failure" after talks to resolve $1.6 billion in cost overruns broke down. ()

* Union Pacific and BNSF Railway allege inadequate repair work led to several derailments in cases that raise questions about whether repair shops or railroads are responsible for equipment safety. ()

* Government investigators looking into the cyber attacks on Neiman Marcus Group LLC and Target Corp believe the malicious software used in the heists was specifically tailored to exploit vulnerabilities in each retailer's checkout systems. ()

* Time Warner Inc broke out financial results for HBO for the first time on Wednesday, showing that the premium cable channel is generating far bigger profits than emerging rival Netflix Inc but HBO's revenue is growing at a much slower pace. ()

* Ralph Lauren Corp reported a 9.7 percent climb in its third-quarter profit. The company whose upscale brands include Polo and Club Monaco has continued to post stronger sales in recent quarters as consumers in the luxury sector have proved to be more resilient after the recession. ()

* The ranks of U.S. public companies grew last year for the first time since the go-go days of the Internet boom, getting a long-awaited boost from an expanding economy and renewed investor interest in U.S. stocks. ()

* The arrest of bitcoin advocate Charles Shrem is a blow to a currency that has been red-hot with users and some investors. But "2014 will be like the Industrial Revolution for bitcoin," he says. ()

* More lenders are introducing fees on checking accounts, just as consumers and business are pouring record amounts into the most basic of banking services. ()

* Merck & Co unveiled an unusual plan to collaborate with three rivals, Pfizer Inc, Amgen Inc and Incyte Corp to study how Merck's immunotherapy cancer drug performs in combination with other treatments. ()

* GlaxoSmithKline PLC managed to increase sales marginally last year despite problems in China, reversing two years of falling revenue for the U.K.'s largest drug maker. ()

* The National Labor Relations Board on Wednesday revived a sweeping proposal to streamline and speed union-organizing elections at companies, positioning the agency for a fight with business groups, which stymied the original 2011 measure in court on a technicality. ()

* Circassia, a company specializing in treating cat, grass and dust-mite allergies is planning to float an offering on the London Stock Exchange, a move that people familiar with the situation said is aimed at raising 175 million pounds ($285 million), which would rank as one of the biggest U.K. biotech listings ever. ()

* Akamai Technologies Inc, whose fourth-quarter earnings rose 18 percent, benefited from increasing demand for content over the Internet with its network of servers and other equipment to expedite content delivery. ()

* Yelp Inc said its fourth-quarter loss narrowed as revenue soared as the Internet company continued to attract more visitors and added local business accounts. ()

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